What is the problem?
Indicator 14 of the Minnesota State Performance Plan and the National Agenda for Education has consistently been an elusive goal. This indicator requires that the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) track the outcomes for youth who had individualized education programs (IEPs) and have completed or left their school program. Indicator 14 requires answers to these and other questions: How are they transitioning to adult life? Are they pursuing higher education and are they competitively employed?
Traditionally MDE has sent tracking surveys to 1/5 of the state's students annually. The responses to this survey are dismal as our low incidence numbers are too low to report. In 2013, seven students who were on an IEP for Deaf/Hard of Hearing services responded to the survey. The Collaborative Plan stakeholders from the Secondary/Transition work group proposed asking D/HH teachers to maintain connections with students as a means to obtaining post-secondary data.
Teachers of students who are age 14 and older are required to add goals to the IEP for transition from high school to post-secondary education or employment. Many professionals do not have prior course work to support this requirement. Resources and training for professionals is a state-wide initiative. Materials specific to supporting D/HH students have been needed state-wide.
Who is affected?
Students who are 18-21 and professionals (teachers and vocational rehabilitation counselors) who prepare students for adult life.
What is the proposed solution?
The Collaborative Plan stakeholders of the Secondary-Transition age work group proposed developing a training web site with materials and webinars for professionals. The site currently hosts the guidelines for effective transition planning plus webinar materials linked to obtaining clock hours for teaching and vocational rehabilitation counselor re-licensure requirements.
Minnesota Transition Team was awarded a grant from Pepnet 2 to develop and implement a post-school survey on a sampling of up to 20 D/HH students (Ages 18 - 22) using clearly defined processes. Of the 118 potential survey participants, 54 post school students completed (or partially completed) the survey. The survey results will soon be available.
Members of the Transition team are currently developing a document called, "A Roadmap to Adult Services." This document is being designed for students who are preparing for life after graduation and their families. The expected publication date is January 2017.
Who do I contact for more information?
You may contact any of the members of the Collaborative Plan Secondary-Transition work group. They are:
Mary Cashman-Bakken, Special Education Consultant
Jay Fehrman, Education Administrator
Elise Knopf , VR Statewide Coordinator of the Deaf
Greta Palmberg, Team Lead and Parent
Anna Paulson, Community Based Agency Staff
How can I help?
The post-school survey is now complete. The survey results will soon be available and will be posted on this page.
Parents and vocational rehabilitation counselors can visit the transition website (external link) for training. They should also stay connected with students who are moving on to the next phase in their life.
NATIONAL SHOWCASE STATE AWARD! The website received recognition for excellent information from Pepnet 2 by creating two videos about our work. One video features the Transition team and describes the work that we do. The second video features students who share their experience.
Office of Special Education (external link)
Pepnet (external link)
University of Minnesota Transition Guidelines and Webinars (external link)